Examining the Resilient Flooring Institute?s FloorScore

Examining the Resilient Flooring Institute?s FloorScore

We always hear about people being concerned about the effects emissions from cars and factories have on the environment. Right now, nations around the world are making laws to promote sustainability and eco-friendly practices so that the air we breathe becomes healthier.

With all this focus on the environment outdoors, it is easy to overlook the fact that there is polluted air inside our homes.

In fact, the air quality indoors can be up to 10 times worse compared to what we breathe in when stepping outside!

Since we spend about 90% of our time indoors, especially in winter, this becomes a major concern as continually breathing in pollutants can cause a variety of health problems.

Fortunately, we can make conscious decisions to lower the levels of pollution in our homes. This can be done by scheduling regular maintenance of our HVAC, cleaning our homes properly, and choosing to install flooring in our home that is certified by the Resilient Flooring Institute?s FloorScore.

In this blog post, we'll examine that last point, the Resilient Flooring Institute?s FloorScore and why you should know about it when buying your new floors.

Where do indoor pollutants come from?

There are many factors that contribute to the Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) of your home:

  • An HVAC that is not properly maintained
  • Not vacuuming or sweeping consistently
  • Certain furniture materials
  • Polluted air outdoors seeping in through windows
  • Car exhaust coming from an attached garage
  • Your home?s floor that has been finished with chemicals
Many man-made materials emit VOCs, or Volatile Organic Compounds, that lower the quality of indoor air. Overall, the predominant source of pollutants come from your floors.

When flooring components go through the manufacturing process, they undergo chemical treatments and can end up emitting VOCs after being installed in your home.

What is FloorScore and how does it help?

The RFCI, or the Resilient Floor Covering Institute, has now made it easier for you to choose a floor with lower levels of VOCs. If you see a product with the FloorScore seal, which is recognized by 19 leading environmental programs, you will know that installing this floor in your home will lead to healthier indoor living.

The FloorScore seal assures you that the product was independently analyzed by the neutral third party organization SCS Global Services and rated under very strict standards.

According to SCS Global Services, ?FloorScore?? is the most recognized indoor air quality (IAQ) certification standard for hard surface flooring materials, adhesives, and underlayments.? By choosing a material with this certification, you can maximize your chance of having the lowest amount of VOCs in your home and breathe easier.

If you would like to see which products currently have the FloorScore guarantee, check out this list. You can also see the entire procedure and requirements that these floors need to have in order to obtain the FloorScore certification here.

It is good to note that FloorScore does not ensure that the installation process will involve low levels of VOCs. Therefore, if you are very sensitive to VOCs, you should leave the premises during the installation process.

How does lowering VOCs benefit me?

The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) says that the health effects that come from poor indoor air can occur anytime- either immediately or even years later. Some immediate signs are:

  • Irritated eyes nose, and throat
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Asthma
  • Cold-like symptoms
Some long term negative health effects are:

  • Respiratory disease
  • Heart disease
  • Cancer
Some people are more sensitive to VOCs than others, but overall it is wise to reduce the level of these indoor pollutants for the sake of everyone in your home.

How else can I improve my indoor air quality?

Aside from choosing a floor with the FloorScore certification, there are other ways to improve your home?s indoor air quality:

  • Improve your HVAC system and maintain it
  • Use good air filters and change them regularly
  • Ventilate your house to let in fresh air periodically
Hard surfaces are better for your home?s indoor air quality because they are easy to clean and keep up with. They are also less likely to absorb spills, odors, and allergens. They also don?t trap moisture which makes an environment for bacteria, fungus, and mold to grow, which all contribute to poorer indoor air quality.

Therefore, if you are aiming for a higher indoor air quality, opt for less carpet and more hard surfaces like tile, hardwoods, or vinyl.

To learn even more about indoor air quality and how to improve it, the EPA has some excellent resources for you on their website.

Experts are standing by.

Do you have any questions about FloorScore and would like to talk to an expert about your next flooring installation? If so, then leave a comment below.

One of our experienced flooring professionals will be happy to get in touch with you and give you all the answers you need.

About Shawn Farina: Flooring Expert at Diverse Flooring

Shawn Farina operates Diverse Flooring, a family-run business in Maple Ridge, with his younger brother, Todd. He has been in the flooring industry for 18 years. Shawn and Todd are passionate about design. They feel flooring has been a great avenue to help others make the best decisions for their homes.

When you come to Diverse Flooring, there's a strong chance the person you interact with is either Shawn or Todd. There's nothing better than dealing with the owners themselves.

???Flooring is something we all will at one time or another have to purchase. It's really satisfying feeling to see when a client is truly happy with their choice in both the new flooring and our company.

Shawn Farina

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